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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 22 August 2018

Palestinian women jailed for anti-occupation poems

Dareen Tatour posted a video of herself reading her poem, "Resist, my people, resist them"

Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour, 35, poses for a picture during an interview with Reuters at her house in Reineh. Reuters
Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour, 35, poses for a picture during an interview with Reuters at her house in Reineh. Reuters

An Israeli court on Tuesday sentenced an Arab woman to five months in prison for incitement to violence and support for a terrorist organisation in poems and other social media posts, the justice ministry said.

Dareen Tatour, 36 and an Israeli citizen, posted a video clip of herself reading her poem "Resist, my people, resist them" in October 2015, accompanied by pictures of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces, according to authorities.

The posts on YouTube and Facebook came as a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence was erupting, including Palestinian knife attacks.

She was convicted in May and sentenced in the Nazareth district court. Her lawyer Gaby Lasky was expected to appeal.

Her prosecution has drawn international criticism.

International writers group Pen has defended Tatour, saying she "has been convicted for doing what writers do every day — we use our words to peacefully challenge injustice".

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The poem was quoted in Hebrew in the charge sheet, but according to an English translation on the Arabic literature and translation site ArabLit, it contains the following lines:

"For an Arab Palestine, I will not succumb to the 'peaceful solution', Never lower my flags, Until I evict them from my land, Resist the settler's robbery, and follow the caravan of martyrs."

Prosecutors said that on October 4, she also quoted a statement by Islamic Jihad calling for "continuation of the intifada in every part of the West Bank", alleging it showed her support for the outlawed militant group.

Tatour, from the Arab village of Reineh near Nazareth, was arrested on October 11, 2015.

FILE PHOTO: Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour, 35, holds a map-shaped necklace charm with a Palestinian flag and 'Palestine' written in Arabic during an interview with Reuters at her house in Reineh, northern Israel September 26, 2017. Picture taken September 26, 2017. REUTERS/Ammar Awad/File Photo
Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour, 35, holds a map-shaped necklace charm with a Palestinian flag and 'Palestine' written in Arabic. Reuters

Her sentencing comes after the release on Sunday of Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamimi, who served an eight-month sentence for slapping two Israeli soldiers, an episode recorded in a video that went viral.

Tamimi, 17, was greeted by crowds of supporters and journalists upon her release in her hometown of Nabi Saleh in the occupied West Bank.

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